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Video game - "Endzone: A World Apart": Picking berries in the apocalypse

Video game – “Endzone: A World Apart”: Picking berries in the apocalypse

At first glance, “Endzone: A World Apart” looks like a computer game that you can safely put aside. The scenario of the construction title is exhausted: After a nuclear disaster, a few people bunker into bunkers, 150 years later they try to colonize the earth again. The graphics are also not convincing. After a worst-case scenario, colorful, blooming fairy-tale landscapes are not to be expected, but the textures don’t have to be that gray and muddy.

But appearances are deceptive. After a short time in the post-apocalypse, it becomes clear that there is a good development game in the “end zone”. And one that can really motivate the player. This is mainly due to the game mechanics, which always inspire new ruminations.

First life,
first problems

First of all, the situation is still manageable. In “survival mode” the player starts with a few resources like scrap and wood, a handful of settlers and a wrecked minibus that serves as a starting base. What do people need? Water and food.

So a few settlers are sent to fetch water and collect berries, a well, a cistern and a hunting lodge are built. On top of that there is a house. It doesn’t look particularly fancy, but it still offers more privacy for reproduction than the neglected bus.

But with the first life in the post-apocalyptic world, the first problems also come. 150 years after the catastrophe, the earth is still irradiated. Food and water have to be decontaminated, the settlers need protective masks and radiation suits. But for all of this, in turn, material, coal and plastic are required, and wood for coal production. And in order to produce coal, a charcoal burner first has to be built.

Effective supply and production chains are therefore essential. The player has to think carefully about when to erect which buildings, where to erect them and, above all, how many workers to allocate for them. Because the number of settlers is limited, they only multiply slowly at first. It takes some time for their children to grow up and ready for action. It is therefore necessary to pay close attention to how many water carriers, hunters, gatherers, lumberjacks, tailors and builders are used. If the staff is incorrectly weighted, the continued existence of the settlement is quickly endangered.

Especially because “Endzone” has all sorts of nice surprises in store. A drought is drying up the nearby lake and plantations, and a sandstorm is damaging the tailoring shop that has just been built. An illness robs the important well control room if a hospital is not built in time.

Once the basic supply has been ensured, things really get going. Schools and research facilities have to be built, and the power supply has to be ensured. At the same time it can now happen that the settlers reproduce too quickly and thus threaten to run out of food and water again.

You can change that with a decree on birth control. But that in turn leads to anger of the settlers. So “Endzone: A World Apart” keeps turning and triggers a real build-up frenzy in the player.

Musical
Wasteland

The weak point of the game remains the graphics. Of course, there are worlds between “Endzone” and the wonderful blockbuster building game “Anno 1800” due to the different development costs.

Every now and then a loving animation or a greater wealth of detail would have upgraded the “end zone” significantly. And with the music, too, a little more variety would have been desirable: The individual pieces are harmonious and beautiful, but repeat themselves too often.

The test sample was made available to the “Wiener Zeitung” by the manufacturer. “Endzone: A World Apart” was released on March 18, 2021 for the PC.

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